Bonxie is the name for the Great Skua, Stercorarius skua, here in Orkney. It’s the Norse name for them.

Great Skua - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

If you’ve ever walked the coast of Orkney, it’s likely that you’ve been intimidated into total submission by one at some stage. They’re apex predators and have no fear of humans.

Watching them interact socially is fascinating and I’d love to know what is going on when they fly together or stand together. This one landed nearby, showing its distinctive white wing-flashes.

Soon, they’ll be back on the Atlantic Ocean as part of their winter migration, living a life on the high seas. It’s great to spend time with them.

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